KIDS CAN TOTALLY CHANGE FATHER’S WAY OF LIVING
No one can believe how my daughter, Katherine, has changed my life since she was born. At the age of 26 I was working at the Human Resources Branch at the Panamanian Air Force Base when my girlfriend notified me by phone that she was pregnant. This information was like throwing cold water in my face. I turned white with shock. Honestly, I wasn’t prepared to deal with this kind of experience. At the beginning, I strongly disagreed with her decision to keep the baby, and I tried several times to avoid my responsibility to become a young father.
During her pregnancy, I concentrated on my work and hobbies. In fact, I rarely visited her at her mother’s house because I didn’t want to take any personal responsibility. She took care of herself alone all the time. Her mother supported her while I was leading a foolish life with my friends, getting drunk, hanging out, and being present at all the celebrations. During one of the social occasions, I met another girl, and we quickly became an item. We had beautiful moments. After a few weeks, I even introduced her as my formal girlfriend to my family.
But social alcoholic activities affected my job too much. Almost every day my commander discovered me sleeping on my desk or not well dressed. Sincerely, I only did fifty percent of my duties. Frankly, I was a zombie working in a military uniform. At home my parents found out about the pregnant lady. Both of them started to blame me and each other for my irresponsible behavior. They tried to convince me numerous times to change my conduct. Their priority was to take care of the woman who was carrying my baby.
During my absence my pregnant girlfriend attended all her appointments alone or with her mother or young sister. It was during the last part of her pregnancy that I dreamed and received a message from God encouraging me to respond to the difficulties she was dealing with. As soon as I reached her mom’s home all her family members blamed me for being absent. It was my fault, and I assumed it without hesitation. After several visits, I started to provide her with the things she needed and might need. At this point, I realized how wrong I had been, and I tried to recover the lost time. Sincerely, I believed that I had responded correctly at the outset, I would have been rescued from my old life sooner.
On October 7th, 1999, the best day of my life, my child was born. I still remember it like yesterday. A few hours after the birth, I entered the room and found mother and child sleeping side by side. I was wearing my uniform when my tears rolled down my face and my heart started to pulse faster than usual. I was totally in shock, and after contemplating the sight before me, I started to imagine the marvelous things I would have done better if I had changed my mind sooner.
From that day, I have believed that God has a purpose for everyone. My daughter and girlfriend became part of my existence immediately. I got rid of my old life, and started to live as a good example for my daughter, family, and coworkers. This is now the goal of my life. My life has changed radically, and I feel like a new blessed creature living as a man in a new environment.
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